TYM ICT "Self-driving agricultural machinery will be introduced next year"
"There is also a wave of the Fourth Industrial Revolution in agriculture, and cutting-edge technology is essential to cope with the rapidly changing agricultural environment. Agricultural machinery, like self-driving cars, will speed up the era of cultivation by itself as long as humans give orders."
Kim So-won, CEO of TYMICT, stresses that agricultural machinery should be able to comprehensively manage crop cultivation from sowing to harvest. TYMICT is a subsidiary of TYM (formerly Dongyang C&T), a company specializing in agricultural machinery, and was spun off and established by its parent company in July last year to focus on developing advanced agricultural machinery such as autonomous agricultural machinery. TYMICT, which inherited TYM's know-how, which marks its 70th anniversary this year, will focus on realizing smart agriculture, led by CEO Kim. After joining TYM as an employee and working for 17 years, he also serves as the head of TYM's management strategy division.
CEO Kim explained, "Information Communication Technology (ICT), autonomous driving, telematics (communication+information science), smart farm, big data, Internet of Things (IoT), and artificial intelligence (AI) are major technologies for smart agriculture. TYMICT has only been established for a year, but recently completed the nation's best self-driving tractor demonstration."
"Differentiation" is important for any company to secure competitiveness in the market. The agricultural machinery market is not limited to Korea, but is largely formed overseas, such as the Americas, Europe, and Southeast Asia, so differentiation is essential. TYMICT has more than 70 years of know-how in the field of agricultural machinery, CEO Kim said. "We have achieved a convergence of expertise in agricultural and agricultural machinery and excellent ICT technologies that other developers do not have."
If there is excellent technology, it is a big task to connect it to commercialization. Regarding the commercialization of technology, CEO Kim said, "There are so many things to prepare to commercialize excellent technologies, especially global networks, brand power, and external expansion are very important," adding, "TYM, the parent company, recently acquired international machines that produce tractors and combine, and introduced new power in overseas markets."
TYMICT's particular focus is on unmanned agricultural machinery. This is because labor-based agriculture by people is becoming increasingly difficult as Korea is expected to enter a super-aged society by 2030. The labor shortage is already a predictable problem, and the way to sustainable agriculture is unmanned agricultural machinery through autonomous driving. We have been working on developing autonomous driving technology since 10 years ago, but we will gradually release autonomous agricultural machinery such as tractors incorporating telematics technology, he said.
It is also providing support to the growing number of young people returning to farming. CEO Kim's theory is that agriculture is directly related to the national food security issue, so it should actively sponsor young farmers who will lead the future of Korean agriculture. He said, "We donated tractors free of charge to 12 young people returning to farming this year, and it continues to maintain and manage them," and added, "We are providing services such as informing users through telematics services when there is a failure or engine oil change."
Agricultural machinery companies are no exception to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) management, which has been involving many companies since not long ago. TYM Group recently declared ESG management for the first time in the agricultural machinery industry and established an in-house ESG committee and secretariat. In addition, in order to cope with climate change, greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption were monitored, and stricter in-house management standards were established to manage water pollutants. CEO Kim said, "TYMICT's precision agricultural technology is essential for ESG management of TYM Group," and confidently said, "It will have a greater effect if it promotes optimized agriculture of low input and high output to prevent environmental deterioration such as soil and water pollution."
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